XTERRA Czech Hosts Europe's Best

By XTERRA
Aug. 9, 2013

The stars are out in Prachatice as the best racers in the XTERRA European Tour (XET) are toeing the line at the XTERRA Czech Championship on Saturday.

Nico LebrunSix of the top seven men and eight of the top nine women are on the start list, highlighted by current points leaders and last year’s Czech Champs Nicolas Lebrun and Helena Erbenova.

This is the sixth of eight points scoring events in the XET, with XTERRA Germany right behind next weekend.  While Erbenova has already wrapped up the women’s crown for the second straight year having won the last four majors, the men’s race is wide-open.

Lebrun, who will retire after the 2013 season, has won the Czech Championship five times – his first coming 10 years ago in 2003 followed by wins in 04, 06, 08, and last year.  Lebrun will be pushed by XTERRA Triple Crown and Greece champion Ben Allen as well as Spain’s Hector Guerra who has been in the top four three times this season, including a runner-up performance at XTERRA Switzerland. The locals are excited to see the XTERRA debut of 23-year-old Czech mountain bike phenom Matej Nepustil.

In the women’s race all the big guns are back with 4x XET and Spain winner Renata Bucher, 2x  XET and 2011 Czech Champ Marion Lorblanchet, Triple Crown winner Jacqui Slack, and South Africa champ Carla Van Huyssteen.

It’s the second year that the medieval city of Prachatice, pronounced pra – ka –teets – ay, will host the event. The village is located a few hours south of Prague in southern Bohemia in a verdant valley surrounded by heavily forested hills and dairy farms.

The event showcases the entire area as it is a point-to-point course. The swim is about 10K from town at a wonderful natural lake up in the mountains. It will be a 2 lap swim in typical XTERRA fashion. Out from the lake riders will have a few K of paved secondary road before heading into the hills. The bike course is roughly 35K long and fast.

“Well, mostly fast. There are two climbs that will be difficult for the best pros to ride, but the first, while steep is not very long. Most of the course is beautiful, loamy dirt with sections of roots but no real slippery sand or gravel,” explained XTERRA managing director “Kahuna Dave” Nicholas.

The bike return is smack in the middle of the Prachatice town square, followed by a run featuring two laps that loop back through town to the finish on the main street of the square.

Here’s a look at the pros racing on Saturday:

PRO MEN (Country) XTERRA European Tour Rank

NICOLAS LEBRUN (FRA) 1
ASA SHAW (FRA) 2
HECTOR GUERRA (SPA) 3
YERAY LUXEM (NED) 4
CEDRIC LASSONDE (FRA) 5
BEN ALLEN (AUS) 7
JIM THIJS (BEL) 10
LLWELLYN HOLMES (GBR) 11
OLIVIER SHAW (NZL) 13
DAVID JANDA (CZE) 16
JAN KUBICEK (CZE) 18
PAVEL JINDRA (CZE) 19
TOMAS KUBEK (SVK) 20
FELIX SCHUMANN (GER) 22
JIRI KLIMA (CZE) NR
JAN FRANCKE (CZE) NR
MATEJ NEPUSTIL (CZE) NR

PRO WOMEN (Country) XTERRA European Tour Rank

HELENA ERBENOVA (CZE) 1
RENATA BUCHER (SUI) 2
MARION LORBLANCHET (FRA) 3
JACQUI SLACK (GBR) 4
BRIGITTA POOR (HUN) 6
CORALIE REDELSPERGER (FRA) 7
MAUD GOLDSTEYN (NED) 8
CARINA WASLE (AUT) 9
LENKA CIBULKOVA (CZE) 11
CARLA VAN HUYSTEEN (RSA) NR
IVANA LOUBKOVA (CZE) NR
NIEKE OOSTRA (NED) NR
HANA KOLAROVA (CZE) NR
KATERINA LOUBKOVA (CZE) NR

For more information visit http://www.xterra.cz/en/

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